Anti-Obama Bloggers Question Why Google Froze Their Accounts
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
By Joseph Abrams
Some bloggers opposed to Barack Obama say they suspect Obama's supporters -- with the assistance of Google -- may have tried to censor them when the Internet giant froze their Web sites for five days last month. Seven blogs run by Democrats who oppose Obama’s nomination for the presidency were incorrectly flagged as spam sites by Blogger, the hosting service Google has owned since 2003.
The bloggers believe that Web surfers who support Obama took advantage of a loophole in Blogger’s system that allows readers to report spam blogs, the artificial Web sites that abound on the internet and are used to promote other sites.
“It appears that [Blogger's] policy can be manipulated by people determined to shut down the free exchange of ideas,” said Carissa Snedeker, whose blog, BlueLyon, was among those that were frozen.
“It’s unusual — I’ve never heard of similar blogs of the same nature being shut down like that,” said Danny Sullivan, editor-in-chief of the tech site SearchEngineLand.com. Blogger quarantined the seven anti-Obama blogs on June 25 while it conducted a review, a process that took five days and made it impossible for the bloggers to write new posts on the weekend of a joint event held by Obama and Hillary Clinton.